Real Estate Closing Cost Calculator
If you know when you are likely to purchase a home & the price of the property you can use this calculator to estimate the total closing costs. Keep in mind the actual fees and expenses may vary depending on factors including the date of the transaction & any shift in rates while the transaction is negotiated.
For your convenience current Seattle mortgage rates are shown beneath the calculator.
Current Seattle 30-YR Fixed Mortgage Rates
The following table highlights current Seattle mortgage rates. By default 30-year purchase loans are displayed. Clicking on the refinance button switches loans to refinance. Other loan adjustment options including price, down payment, home location, credit score, term & ARM options are available for selection in the filters area at the top of the table.
Understanding Closing Costs for Real Estate Buyers
Buying your new home can be an exciting time for sure, but it is also a time to have a good handle on what to expect. Timing and costs are mitigating factors that every home buyer will worry about, even if they think they fully understand what is coming their way.
The home buying process can be a long one and vary by a lot of specific details to you or your area. Understanding the basics in timing and associated costs can help you to make a more balanced and careful decision every step of the way.
How Long Will It Take to Buy My House?
Data recently shared from Realtor.com suggests that 50 days is the median time it takes to close on most homes.
There are factors that can speed-up or slow down this normal processing time, such as the condition of the property or the condition of the loan application. More specifically, if your own loan application is not completely approved and ready to go, this is usually the main factor in slowing down the process. A lack of proper insurance can also hinder a smooth outcome.
Similarly, if there are any discrepancies found between the inspection and the appraisal of the property, it can easily drag out the completion of the closing. It is common for a buyer to refuse to move forward without all repairs being either completed or factored as a discount into the final pricing.
As a buyer, to speed-up your closing process, you can take a few simple steps along the way:
- Get mortgage pre-approval – it is often possible to get a pre-approval from a lender for a certain amount of a mortgage loan. As a buyer, obtaining this prior to home shopping will allow the sellers to see your earnestness as well as your creditworthiness.
- Secure insurance – know that as a buyer, you will likely need to have homeowner’s insurance as well as some mortgage insurance. Talk to your sales agent to understand what your requirements will be and what you can do ahead of the sale.
- Review the title issues, if any – any existing liens on the property should be addressed prior to closing. Though this is truly the responsibility of the seller, if the buyer presses the issue toward a shared resolution it may address and hopefully avoid any potential title related pitfalls. (Also see title insurance, below)
- Identify the property’s issues – with your inspection, you will generally generate a list of items to negotiate in the sales process. Some will be the responsibility of the seller, some will be a way for the buyer to get a lower sales price. Be sure to address all noted issues as soon as possible.
If you take these few steps prior to the closing, the closing process itself will go much more quickly for everyone involved. Proactive paperwork can save you a lot of time and worry.
Once you understand what your responsibilities will be in the closing procedure, it will also help you to get a handle on what kind of specific closing costs you can expect.
Closing Costs for the Home Buyer
While a home seller takes a bigger bite of the closing costs by absorbing the realtor commissions, a home buyer will still need to come up with some deal-sealing payouts of their own.
You can assume that you will pay 2-5% of the home’s sales price in buyer closing costs, and these costs will generally come to you in the form of itemized fees.
The list of potential fees to be paid is a long one but do note, that not all fees will be applicable to your sale. While it is true that most of the fees are also nominal, when added together they become a more serious amount to contend with.
Some fees will be mandatory, some will have negotiating room. Some fees might be used as bargaining chips, some will be inflexibly required by the state or federal government.
Consult with your closing agent to be sure of which of the following fees will be your responsibility at closing:
- Application fee: this can be an inclusive fee that lenders use to collect associated closing costs, such as appraisals and credit checks. It can also be used to cover the application processing fees. An application fee might be negotiable, and many lenders will not have one.
- Attorney fee: not mandatory in all states, attorney fees will cover the costs of attorney document reviews. Sometimes the buyer and the seller need an attorney, often they share one.
- Title Search: the title company will do a thorough search to ensure there are no other claims on your new home.
- Origination fee: similar to the application fee, this is a lender-based fee that is not always a requirement. If in place, expect about 1% of your loan amount to cover it.
- Transfer fee: you will have to transfer the title from the previous owner and the cost will be the buyer’s responsibility at closing.
- Appraisal: a detailed appraisal of the property to determine fair market value, and it is the buyer’s responsibility. Typically, this is a flat fee and performed by a locally licensed agent.
- Credit report fee: to determine your creditworthiness, a tri-bureau credit check will be performed, and you will pay for it. A one-time fee.
- Bank processing fees: the lender may have charges associated with the loan’s processing.
- Notary fee: the loan documents will need professional notarization, which carries a small fee.
- Recording fee: usually a city or county fee to cover the recording of the property’s transfer of ownership.
- Courier fees: the buyer pays for courier services to complete the loan paperwork and anything related to it.
- Property tax: you may be asked to deposit into an escrow account to cover the costs of up to two months of property taxes and mortgage insurance.
While the previously listed fees will tend to be found in most closings, the following costs are more specific to the type of loan you have, or the property’s characteristics:
- Flood certification insurance: if your new home is in the flood zone, flood insurance will be a cost to be fully cognizant of. This can also apply to lakefront homes. This is going to be paid separately if required and may be an unbending reality to buy your home.
- Prepaid insurance: depending on your loan details, you may be required to pay the first month of mortgage insurance at closing. Most loans will require proof of homeowner’s insurance.
- Prepaid interest: most lenders will require that you prepay the interest that will accrue from the closing until your first mortgage payment is due.
- Title insurance: this is paid to ensure the validity of the title against any future claims, protecting the lender’s interests as well as yours. Usually optional.
- Homeowner’s association fees: while these are usually the seller’s responsibility up to the closing date, it is the buyer’s responsibility to understand any HOA fees and membership requirements. There may be transfer fees. This is separate from homeowner’s insurance.
- Pest inspection: depending on which part of the country you live in, you may have to ward against termites and dry rot. Termite control may be a requirement of your state. Repairs for an infestation can be costly as well.
- Loan discount points: negotiated prior to closing, you can often prepay points to reduce your interest, principal or APR. These would be settled at closing.
- FHA Up-Front Mortgage Insurance Premium: with an FHA loan, one thing to expect is this insurance payment, which is used as security for the loan type. It will be 1.75% of the base loan amount due at closing.
- Lead-based paint testing: you may have to have paint samples tested to determine their lead content. Largely an issue with older homes and buildings.
These may not be all the fees and costs you might face to close on your sale, but the lists above should include most of them. To get a firmer handle on what your personal obligations will be, talk to your loan agent or representative.
It is usually quite possible to figure out the total closing costs much earlier than the actual closing and be accurate to within a few dollars of the total costs you'll pay. Ask if fees are negotiable or flexible in any way – it could save you thousands over time. Knowing what to expect in closing can only help your home buying process go more smoothly and allow you to budget with a stronger sense of faith and overall confidence.